Diabetes and Sleep disturbances go Hand in Hand

- by Nicola Kartos

Nearly 36% of Americans are affected by sleep disorders. A restless night does more than make a person feel groggy all day ~ it puts a person at risk for developing diabetes. Many side effects of diabetes also affect a person's ability to get a rested night's sleep. Many doctors feel that these sleeping disorders can be overcome naturally, provided that a person arranges his sleeping environment for a good night's rest and works to change bad sleeping behaviors. Many diabetics find that by using these natural techniques, they get a better night's rest and help reduce their diabetes.

Diabetes and sleep disturbances go hand in hand, according to studies by National Institute of Mental Health and American Diabetes Association. Basically, since diabetes changes how your body processes insulin, people with diabetes have metabolisms that aren't well balanced. (To back up, insulin is a hormone that converts starch and sugar into energy.) Awakening un-refreshed from a night's sleep tends to trigger the body to miscalculate how much insulin should be produced. Also, when the body's glucose (sugar) levels are off, the body tends to not respond well to sleep and quality is compromised.

The length of time in bed doesn't affect sleep problems as much as how alert the person feels waking up. According to the National Sleep Foundation, most people wake up 12 to 15 times a night on average without even remembering it. The problem with many diabetics is they are awakened by their diabetic conditions. If the cause is from low blood glucose (hypoglycemia), they often experience feelings of hunger. A diabetic who's awakened by high blood glucose often experiences headaches, night sweats or frequent urges to go to the bathroom.

In Type II Diabetes, a person's poor sleeping habits often trigger diabetes. In these people who are predisposed to diabetes, outside factors such as depression or inactivity can exasperate bad sleep patterns and lead to diabetes. Many Type II diabetics have a hard time falling asleep or wake up too early with little energy. For these diabetics, sleep patterns can be carefully restructured and greatly reduce their diabetes.

Many diabetics find relief from a restless night by using some of the below natural methods:

  • Shut off the TV and lights before getting into bed. These bright and active distractions discourage the body from sleeping.
  • Avoid certain foods with caffeine or alcohol before bed. These stimulants, including smoking, can keep you awake. Also, in time, many people build up a tolerance to sleeping pills and other prescriptions that actually keep you awake.
  • To signal that it's time to get up and stay awake, make your bed during the day. Also, only go into your bed at night to sleep, not to read or eat.
  • Make a plan to move for at least 30 minutes every day. Exercise and moderate movement not only helps you maintain a health weight but also helps your body recognize rest time.
  • Before bedtime, allow your body to wind down. Take a shower to relax muscles. Give yourself permission to use a 10 to 20 minute "worry time" to release tension before bed. Afterwards, resolve to not revisit those worries until the next morning.
Getting a good night's sleep is more important the number of hours slept, especially for a diabetic. After getting past poor sleep patterns, many diabetics find that their diabetes is greatly lowered.

Copyright 2005 Nicola Kartos. All rights reserved.Nicola Kartos is the owner and operator of Diabetes Corewhich is a major on-line resource providing diabetes related information.

Ayurveda also has suggested number of simple Lifestyle changes like this for better control of Diabetes. In fact this is the theme of our Best seller e-book "Ayurvedic Cure of Diabetes "

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